Friday, 1 June 2012

History Two-Markers: 2011-2009

Hello. Am compiling below information on some of the 2 to 5 marker questions that have been asked previously in the CSE GS papers. (In the hope that some of them may be repeated) :)


Benoy-Badal-Dinesh Martyrdom: In 1930, Benoy Krishna Basu, Badal Gupta and Dinesh Gupta shot Colonel NS Simpson the inspector-general of prisons who was infamous for his brutal oppression of prisoners, in the Writer's Building, Kolkata (present seat of power of the Bengal govt). 
Benoy, Badal and Dinesh got into Writers' dressed as Europeans so they wouldn't draw any suspicion. They shot Simpson and a gunbattle ensued between them and the British police. The police overpowered them and the trio adopted different ways to evade arrest. Badal consumed potassium cyanide, while Benoy and Dinesh turned the revolvers on themselves. Benoy died later in a hospital and Dinesh, who survived, was ordered to be hanged till death on July 7, 1931.  
Years later, the Dalhousie Square which is the central business district of Kolkata and the seat of state government was renamed after the trio as BBD Bagh. Also in July 2011, the state government planned a memorial for the three martyrs in Writer's Building. 1

Babbar Akali Movement:  The Babbar Akali movement was a 1921 splinter group of "militant" Sikhs who broke away from the mainstream Akali movement over the latter's insistence on non-violence over gurdwara reforms. By 1922, they had organized themselves into a military group and began killing informers, government officials, and ex-officials. The Babbar Akali movement recruited from World War I veterans dissatisfied with broken land grant promises and former members of the Ghadar Party.[2] Many of its members were killed in police encounters. 2


Latika Ghosh: Latika Ghosh was an Oxford-educated teacher and freedom fighter. She started the Mahila Rashtriya Sangha in 1928 at the instance of Subash Chandra Bose. The aim of the MRS was to fight for freedom by mobilising cadres of women for political work. It was born out of Latika’s efforts to organise resistance to the Simon Commission. In the year of its foundation, the women in their uniform of red-bordered green saris and white blouses marched beside men, with ‘Colonel’ Latika leading them, in the procession to inaugurate the annual Congress meeting in Kolkata. This sight made a tremendous impression on the middle-class Bengali community, as all Latika’s lieutenants were educated, well-to-do high-caste women from respectable families. Bina Das (q.v.), who later attempted to shoot the governor of Bengal (Stanley Jackson), was one of her officers.  3
Bina Das shot Jackson at a Convocation Ceremony in the University of Calcutta in 1932.

Bhai Maharaj Singh: was a saintly person turned revolutionary who led an anti-British movement in the Punjab, after the First Anglo-Sikh war, 1846 till his capture in 1849. Maharaj Singh's revolutionary career started with the Prema conspiracy case involving him in a plot to murder the British resident, Henry Lawrence, and other pro-British officers of the Lahore Darbar. He campaigned against the British in the battles of Ramnagar, Chelianvala and Gujarat and made Dev Batala, near Jammu, his secret headquarters to carry on his fight. The British resident at Lahore was so afraid of his influence that he announced Rs 10,000 on his head. 
Bhai Maharaj Singh, Baba Bir Singh and Baba Khuda Singh played a principal role in enthusing patriotism in the masses. They operated from Naurangabad (Near Tarn Taran, Punjab) which became as important as Lahore and remained a pivot of vigorous pro-Sikh Raj and anti-British activities for more than a decade under these three leaders. 4,5


Kiang Nongbah: led upsurges of Jaintias (Meghalaya) in 1860 and 1862 against British imposed taxes.

Maski: an archaeological site in Raichur dist (Karnataka) where the first rock edict of Emperor Asoka was found which contained the name  'Asoka' as opposed to other rock edicts which contained the name 'Devanamapiya Piyadasi'. This rock edict also helped link the other rock edicts to Emperor Asoka.

Govind Guru:  was a leader of Bhils, Dalits and Backward Classes of southern Rahasthan (Dungarpur and Banswara districts). He founded the Samp Sabha which was dedicated to fighting the British and Indian princes.  In 1908 when his followers had gathered in Banswara, British forces opened fire on them killing almost 1500 Bhils. [2008 marked the centenary of the great sacrifice and there was some criticism that the Rajasthan government (BJP) had ignored this great tribal sacrifice in the celebrations of 150 yrs of the 1857 Revolt]. 6

Brahmadeya:  In South India, lands or villages were given as gifts to Brahmans or local priests. These were known as Brahmadeya. These lands were often located close to irrigation works or irrigation facilities were created near them if required. The Brahmins were not allowed to till the land, according to their caste rules, thus peasants were required to cultivate them. The peasants would get a small part of the produce. In some cases bonded labour or veshti also developed in these areas so as to force the peasants to work these lands.

Egmore Faction: Egmore faction was one of the two factions of Brahmins in Madras Presidency in 1920s. It was led by the editor of The Hindu: Kasturi Ranga Iyengar. [The other faction was 'Mylapore faction' led by Chetpet Brahmins, who were close to the Governor]. Other important groups were the Salem Nationalists led by C. Rajagopalachari, and th Justice Party [represented non-Brahmins]. These factions struggled with one another for power. When C. Rajagoplacari came to Madras in 1918 he was able to oust the Egmore faction from the leadership of the Tamilnadu Congress. In 1920 the Governor invited the Justice Party to form government. Thus the Egmore faction found itself isolated from the Government, the Congress and the Legislative Council. 7,8

Haileybury College: Haileybury College was set up by the East India Company in UK in 1806 to train civil servants. This was in reaction to the Fort William College set up by Lord Wellesley in Calcutta in 1800 for the same purpose, which was disapproved by the Court of Directors. 

Ijara System: 'Ijarah' is revenue farming whereby the Mughal govt contracted with revenue farmers and middlment to pay the govt a fixed amount of money, while they were free to collect whatever they could from the peasant. This was a departure from Todar Mal's policy where a fixed land revenue was collected from the farmers.

Taji MiderenA freedom fighter from Arunachal Pradesh Taji Mideren was a farmer and trader. He took part in the activities against British rule and killed  three British officers in 1905. He organized his Mishmi fellow tribals and established a Mishmi Confederacy to resist the expansion of British authority. He was finally captured by the British police in 1917 and sentenced to death.

Gurudwara Reform Movement: is another name for the Akali movement. Akali movement started in 1920 to wrest control of Gurudwaras from corrupt mahants. 

Marumakkathayam is a system of matrilineal inheritance prevalent in Kerala. Under the Marumakkathayam system of inheritance, descent and succession to the property was traced through females. Marumakkathayam literarily meant inheritance by sisters children as opposed to sons and daughters. 9



  1. hey this is a good move. lets compile history 2 n 5 markers as well. of past 10 yrs atleast. simply cos as u said....'hope that some of them may be repeated". the chances are big. so worth the effort. i ll hunt for the questions as well. or if u have it pls do post atleast a compilation of all questions. this wd help work division.

  2. Hi Aditi,
    Would be glad to have someone continue this effort. I have compile notes on these 2-markers till 2008. The other topics are given below:
    Age of Sangam Literature; Bhaktu; Ashtadhyayi of Panini; Charvakas; Ajivikas; Gandhara Art; Mlechchas; Lingayats; Megasthenes; R.C.Dutt; Nagarjunakonda; Pastoralism; Rudrammadevi; Sati; Ramanuja; Yakshagana
    Kalhana; Panini; Yakshagana; Natyashastra; Tabaqat-i-Nasiri; Madhura Vijayam; Mandhurang Mahatmya; Prithviraj Raso; JC Daniel; Aruna Roy; Balwant Gargi; Dr.Jayant Narlikar; Shashi Tharoor
    [Its evident that in 2006 the personalities and history 2-markers were clubbed into one section].
    Yajnavalkya Smriti; Sutta Pitaka; Bhagwati Sutra; Gangaikonda-Cholapuram; Nizamuddin Auliya; Raidas; Calcutta Madarsa; Jagat Seth; Bhawani Mandir; Baba Ram Chandra; Pandita Ramabai; Sir Thomas Roe; Moplah Rebellion; Tavernier; Darul-Uloom.


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